Dick Francis, CBE
Dick Francis has died.
I have forgotten the solutions to his mysteries, but not his competent, just heroes or the race tracks where you could usually find them.
Over six decades Francis wrote more than 40 books, which have sold more than 60 million copies in more than 20 languages.
All stemmed from his first career as a National Hunt rider, in which he won 345 races and claimed the title of Champion Jockey for the 1953/54 season.
He rode in eight Grand Nationals, but never won it, famously being denied victory in 1956 while riding Devon Loch for the late Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother.
Francis was a warm man who liked to mull things over. He worked closely with his wife Mary, "his researcher and collaborator", and was adored by his sons. In the last decade, his son Felix co-authored four mysteries with his father.
Ave atque Vale.